Well Cavs fans, if you want to re-live the misery that was Game 5, feel free to check out my running diary of the game below. If you want to just skip to my final thoughts, just click directly to the second page – it’s OK, I won’t be offended.
5:58 p.m. – Just checked out Windhorst’s blog and it says Gilbert Arenas is shutting it down for the year. In my opinion that’s a bad sign for the Cavs – I think the Wizards have played much better without him this season. With the exception of about a six minute stretch in the first half of Game 1, he’s been invisible in this series. There’s no way they’re going to re-sign him next year.
6:00 – Ernie Johnson, heavy on the sarcasm against the Celtics! I like it! And I honestly got chills listening to Joe Tait’s call of Delonte West’s 3-pointer. I love Joe Tait.
6:04 – Just flicked over to FSN and saw Barack Obama playing a pickup game with Tyler Hansbrough and UNC. I’m not even a Democrat but I’m officially jumping on the Hillary Clinton bandwagon.
6:07 – STAY AWAY FROM THE CLICHES, REGGIE! STAY AWAY!
6:07 – I’ve never understood the “serious” referee’s camera shot at the beginning. Never. What is the purpose – to make them look like badasses? Congratulations, TNT, Joe DeRosa looks like a badass. Are you happy? Is that what you want?
6:09 – Two turnovers and a missed jumper as the Wizards hit a pair of shots. Way to jump on them from the opening tip, guys.
6:12 – Zydrunas Ilgauskaus – I mean, you can’t even get mad at a 7-3 Lithuanian who spins in seven different directions and makes a fallaway jumper. Oh, plus he did it over Brendan Haywood, a player whom was held in such high regard by the Cavs organization that he got traded for Michael Doleac. God I hate UNC.
6:15 – Gilbert Arenas caught smiling on the bench. Looks like the knee is really bothering him. And any time Ben Wallace makes a shot, it’s like playing with house money.
6:19 – Caron Butler seems locked in tonight. The Cavs have done a good job slowing him this series, but when he plays well, they’re tough. Jamison doesn’t scare me as a “Wow, this guy’s taking over the game” type player. Butler has that ability. 10-8, Wizards.
6:21 – As good as Butler has been, Wally has been that BAD for the Cavs. He is completely out of sync on the offensive end.
6:24 – LeBron versus Big Ben free throw shooting contest. Who wins? I don’t think either one of them does.
6:25 – HERE WE GO!!!
6:26 – So Darius Songaila slaps LeBron. Stevenson apparently touches Andy, who slaps his hand away. Techs all over the place. No one kicked out. Eddie Jordan’s crying all over the place. What a mess. If these teams meet up in the playoffs next year, I am convinced there will be a fatality.
6:30 – Today’s Sign of the Apocalypse – Anderson Varajeo hitting a face-up jumper. And on the next play, he and Joe Smith tag-team for a charge against Soulja Boy. I could see them both flying over and setting up for it as soon Stevenson took his first dribble. 20-16, Wiz.
6:32 – I think the NBA should bring in Ed Hochuli to officiate this series. Who’s going to mess with him? Ed would kick the you-know-what out of Soulja Boy for even looking at him.
6:34 – Andy Varejao, back to earth with the missed jumper.
END OF QUARTER THOUGHTS (23-16 WASHINGTON)…
1. Do the Cavs have an offensive philosophy in this game besides Andy Varejao and Delonte West hoisting jumpers? No ball movement, terrible passing – bad quarter.
2. Butler has 14 points and has missed only one shot. Can we start doubling him please and let Antonio Daniels or Roger Mason try to beat us?
3. LeBron needs to keep attacking. Just foul out every one of Washington’s big guys. Pick and roll basketball, please.
6:42 – BOOBIE FOR THREE!!!
6:43 – Are you kidding me Caron Butler? Two circus shots, a buzzer-beating three at the end of the first…sheesh.
6:45 – I don’t think there’s anyone in basketball better at tipping shots in than Z. I’d hate to play “21” against him because he’d be knocking me back to zero every single time I missed.
6:46 – Watching Devin Brown, Boobie and West running a 3-on-2 fastbreak is like watching three newborn puppies floundering around. Cavs still down three.
6:49 – Someone please tell TNT and TBS that I’m never, EVER, going to watch “The Closer”, “The Bill Engvall Show” or anything to do with Tyler Perry. Thanks.
6:51 – Roger Mason, one of 17 former ACC players on the Wizards roster, is absolutely killing us right now. But I’ll live with it because he can’t do it all game.
6:52 – Does Boobie miss threes after LeBron passes him the ball? I bet he makes 75 percent of his threes off of LeBron passes.
6:56 – Interview with Gilbert! “I could barely make the flight because I couldn’t walk,” he said. Umm, Windhorst had a different story in his pregame notes.
6:58 – Is he snacking? Is Gilbert Arenas snacking on the bench?
6:58 – Look, Boobie, I appreciate your efforts to attack the basket, I do. But please stop. You’re not that much better of a ballhandler than I am. Just shoot threes. Thanks. Wizards up 34-32.
7:00 – Do the teams realize they can shoot from inside the arc? That’s like four or five in a row!
7:01 – Reason Number 317 Why LeBron Needs To Attack the Basket: About 14 Wizards defenders fly at him when he does. LeBron puts up a shot. If it goes in, great. If it doesn’t, Z and Wallace are there for the offensive rebound. It’s simple, I know, but sometimes I just wonder if LeBron and Mike Brown realize HOW simple it is.
7:04 – Flip over to the Tribe game just as they show an overhead shot of the Jake (I know, I know.) Anyway, it looks like there’s about 13 people there tonight. Gotta love April baseball games in Cleveland!
7:08 – Thank God it’s almost halftime. I need a drink.
7:09 – LeBron attacks the basket…follow up from Z…well I’ll be! 44-41 Washington right before half.
HALFTIME THOUGHTS (45-43 WIZARDS)…
1. I mean, it could be worse. We’re only down two after sleepwalking through about 20 of the first 24 minutes. The only real burst of energy I saw was at the start of the second quarter. If we played like we cared, at least a little, we’d be up five to 10 points right now.
2. Did Butler even touch the ball in the second quarter? Except for the ridiculous shot that I wouldn’t even attempt in PIG and the final three, I don’t even remember him having the ball. And I’m not complaining. If the Wizards don’t want to get their best player involved, that’s fine with me.
3. LeBron is just 2-of-8 from the floor and 2-of-5 from three-point range. So he’s only officially taken three two-point shots. Umm, something is horribly, horribly wrong with that.
4. As a result, the Cavs are shooting just 40 percent from the floor and have turned it over seven times. Most of those turnovers were just terrible, unforced errors. Gotta clean it up.
5. Soulja Boy has 11 points and also four rebounds. He also has a technical foul and been booed so much you’d swear he was wearing a Steelers jersey and not a Wizards one.
6. I know Boobie and West have scored some points this half, but they really are not playing well at all. They are just too inconsistent to rely on for large stretches of time, particularly when they’re not making shots. Neither one is a strong ballhandler or can create his own shot. And Wally Szczerbiak has been miserable.